Editing Quest

Writers are true knights. And I mean any writer. Even academic writing. Because when you edit your writing, it’s like a knight fighting the dragon boss, level 99.

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Dragon Boss, Level 99. No words can describe how ferocious it is.

I have one finished story.

The first draft I wrote, the first ever draft, was about 7 years ago.

But then, I changed the story. I had two protagonists and I made it one.

Because it’s an adventure story, I now have different characters going on the adventure with the protagonist than I did 7 years ago.

The village that appears in the story seems more real now.

The conflicts the characters deal with also seem more real and compared to that first draft 7 years ago, the story seems more meaty. There’s more to it than just a bunch of people going on an adventure.

But to get here, to this point, you can’t just do it in one go. I learned that the hard way. You have to go through several drafts, like several levels to get to level 99.

Maybe some of you have the chance to share your story in a Creative Writing or Fiction Writing class and maybe you even learn how to edit. But I didn’t have that chance until I was well into level 70 or so.

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About Level 70 Dragon. Ferocious but not too bad.

So how did I tackle my dragon boss, level 99?

The one thing I can say that helped me was learning to edit other people’s stories.

Okay, bear with me here. When you edit other people’s stories, you are the reader.

Well of course you are!

But that’s the point.

When you read your own story, you are reading it as the writer. Things make sense to you. All those little details are in your head so you feel like maybe you don’t need to write them down. Or, you get so worried the reader won’t see your world, you put too many details in.

But, when you read a story as the reader, you get confused when something is missing. Or, you get overwhelmed with information you could have probably just assumed.

After editing many people’s writing, I found out exactly what I needed to do for my own story.

And so, I was able to advance in the levels.

Let me tell ya, it took a tremendous amount of discipline and effort to keep going on this editing process. Some days I was so frustrated that things weren’t working out, I wanted to work on something else. And I did. Sometimes, your mind needs a break.

Yet, I had set myself a goal. I was going to finish editing by the end of Nov, 2017. I had been working on this story long enough. I was going to finish it before December so I could start querying.

And I did. I defeated the dragon boss, level 99. It was the longest battle of my life.

So, here we are 🙂

Someone knight me. I think I deserve it 😛

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